If I am a new customer stumbling across your business online for the first time, what do I see? Are all my questions resolved within one Google search or am I left searching for answers?
Your online presence is often the first time people interact with your business. We don’t want it to also be the last interaction.
Getting customers through your door or scheduling an appointment is highly dependent on your digital first impression. Go into 2023 with surefire ways to improve your online presence to potential customers.
Why is Online Presence Important?
If you’re hoping to get more eyes on your business in 2023, having a solid online presence will help you get discovered.
Not only will your business appear legit as it populates on searches, but you’re also marketing your business without even trying when you tap into local SEO.
By taking the organic route you can save money while still converting those potential customers. Improving your online presence is invaluable and worth every second of the effort, so let’s not waste another moment.
Roughly 85% of consumers use the internet to discover and find local businesses.—Zippa
Lock in on Lesser-Known Online Listings
This is likely one you hear often, but bare with us. It’s not ONLY about being discovered on Google, Bing and Yelp.
There are dozens of search engines your business needs to be on. You want to be where your clients are, so listing on various search engines is a must.
It’s imperative that the listing information is updated and consistent. When Google sends its crawlers to verify the accuracy across sites, having that cohesive data helps boost your Google ranking and gets you closer to landing in the Map Pack.
Offer a Client Portal
In 2023, it’s time to give the power back to your customer. Any requests or answers they’re looking for should be available on a client portal — from scheduling or looking for an upcoming appointment to making a payment.
If your customer can’t interact with your company independently of you and your staff, that’s a red flag. In fact, 88% of people expect a self-service portal when working with businesses.
Every exceptional client portal should offer:
- A personalized login
- Online payment capabilities
- Centralized communication
- Online booking and scheduling
- Document uploading
- Click-to-call, in case they actually need you
By branding your client portal, you create yet another SEO opportunity. When those who have heard of your business go searching online, seeing a client portal makes your business appear much more professional.
They’ll also appreciate the convenience of not having to stop in or drop a line to get a service booked.
Lean into Opportunities to Boost Your Google Ranking
Life is full of choices. For example, you could shell out the money to land on page one of Google, or you could optimize your way to the top. SEO is a free way to land your business on page one of Google — the throne of online presence.
By prioritizing local SEO, you’ll improve your visibility in your area and get discovered in near-me searches. Did you know that 50% of users visit a store within a day of making a local search?
Be sure to claim local listings on Google Business Profile, social channels and directories.
Also, keep in mind that SEO trends evolve. What worked for your business in 2019 will not necessarily work in your interest now. Get ahead of the game by tapping into SEO trends for 2023.
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Update Your Professional Website
Tell me about your business’s website. Is it tastefully branded with your signature colors? Does it offer eye-catching images and price ranges for your services — or is it actually just a Facebook for Business page?
Dear readers, that is NOT a website, and you deserve more.
Don’t cut corners on your website. 38.5% of people form their opinion of a business based on initial user experience, so consider these five must-haves to make sure you measure up.
- An attractive layout. Your business’s website should appear professional and provide the information your visitors what quickly. Don’t shy away from letting your brand aesthetic shine — tastefully.
- Mobile-friendliness. More than half of online consumers in the U.S. search for local businesses via their mobile browsers. Ensure your website is optimized for mobile viewing to keep the user experience high.
- Quick loading. No one likes waiting unnecessarily. In fact, 40% of people will leave a website if it takes more than three seconds to load.
- Vital information. Give the people what they want: detailed service descriptions, contact options, hours of operation and reviews from customers. The trick is to organize this information to avoid a crowded site.
- Compelling CTA. Tell your customer what to do next with eye-catching call-to-action buttons. Think of the “Book Now” button as your closer. Get creative testing out varying CTAs and lock in that sale.
Your customers’ first impression of your business occurs long before you realize it. Get off on the right foot by making sure to check off all five elements of a successful business website.
Intentionally Get Social
Social media is the ultimate amplification tool. Engagement impacts your business’s overall SEO; however, don’t just hop onto social media platforms without a plan. Stay as intentional with your social sites as you are in the operations of your business.
In order to improve your online presence, you must improve your social presence. Contrary to what many may believe, having more followers does not mean you have a stronger presence.
Although we love gaining followers, this is about quality over quantity. What good is thousands of followers with only 3 people engaging your posts?
Instead, focus on bringing in those individuals who fit into your target audience and provide content that benefits them like helpful how-tos and fun instructionals.
Likes and comments will turn into user-generated content. Did you know marketing campaigns with user-generated content result in 29% higher conversions than campaigns without it?
With so many online channels, boosting your business’s online presence is a large endeavor, but it can yield big returns if you play your cards right.
Use these tips and take a shot at improving your online presence this year. You deserve yet another way to stand out against your competitors.